Alas, we do not even have the time to watch the fine historical documentary of The Guns of August, nor the well done movie account of Nicholas and Alexandra.
Barbara Tuchman was one of the best historical writers of recent times. The Guns of August won her a Pulitizer Prize and many readers. The book has remained in print from 1962 to the present. It should be on any history teacher's short list of vital books about the 20th century and World War I.